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Former Apple CEO Joins Launch aimed at Chasing Smartphone Cables

CAMPBELL, CA (Reuters) – For more than 14 years at Apple Inc, Ruben Cabalero has had to include cable with every design of his wireless technology he oversaw, from the first prototypes in 2005 to the iPhone 11 shelves. now.

Keyssa Inc. Wireless Chief Strategist Ruben Cabalero and CEO Eric Almgren at one of the company's labs in Campbell, California, USA, October 18, 2019. RATERS / Steven Nellis

Now, as Chief Wireless Strategist for Startup in Silissi , Caballero hopes to cut the cable forever – for all smartphones. His new position was not announced earlier.

Every iPhone since its first release in 2007 comes with cable as a reliable way of transferring data like almost any other brand of phone.

Keyssa wants to complete this with its chip, which can transfer data almost as fast as a wire, by placing two devices side by side. An early client of LG Electronics Inc used the chip to connect the second screen of its LG V50 smartphone.

Wireless charging has taken place in phones, but wireless data connections such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi remain too fine to eject cables completely.

Keyssa raised more than $ 100 million from risk groups at Intel Corp, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, parent of Foxconn Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd, and a fund run by Tony Fadell, another former Apple executive who helped create on the iPod and then hired Caballero for the original iPhone team.

"Any consumer product would like to solve the external connector," says Cabalero, who left Apple earlier this year in an interview at Keyssa Headquarters in Campbell, California.

Cabalero, a retired Canadian Air Force captain who prefers counterfeit clothing, also has eyes on the inside of phones. There, the cables cause an engineering headache.

The camera modules are connected to the main boards with thin cables. Bend them enough and they break, creating an unintended "beautiful antenna" that interferes with cellular data connections, Cabalero said.

With Keyssa chips, camera modules can touch the card to transmit data wirelessly. The chips use high frequencies that do not interfere with the phone or nearby devices.

"The good part is the frequency," Cabalero said. "It just fixes a lot of problems."

In addition to phones, Keyssa tests chips with video display manufacturers and at least one lidar sensor manufacturer, the electronic eyes of self-driving cars.

"Ruben is a powerhouse when it comes to commercializing great technology," Fadell tells Reuters.

Cabalero brings with him the experience of overseeing over 1,000 Apple wireless engineers in a department with a budget of $ 600 million just for testing equipment.

Slideshow (3 images)

Before joining Apple, Cabalero worked at two startups and liked the furious pace there and in his early days at Apple working with Fadell.

When Fadell brought him to Apple in 2005, Cabalero asked where all the test equipment and labs were for the group.

"He said, 'We have nothing, but we will do it,'" Cabalero said. "Do you know when there is something in his eyes – you see the vision. Then I was hooked. I slept under my desk. When you have this passion, this it's amazing. And I can feel it here. "

Report by Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Greg Mitchell and Richard Chang

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Principles of Trust.

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